Affirm 2015 Business Executive LunchShare Event on Facebook Share Event on Twitter Share Event on LinkedIn
Affirm is the Australian Foundation for Mental Health Research with at its helm as Chair Margaret Reid and as her deputy the lady she defers to as the driving force behind the success of the organisation, Virginia Hansen. Supported by a board with an eclectic mix of locals with their fingers on the pulse of this community, Affirm works to make a difference into the research, community acknowledgement of the needs and the pursuit of solutions for an illness that will affect 1 in 5 Australians, using a supportive network of business and the local community to raise much needed money.
The annual Executive Business Lunch, sponsored by EY, is a significant part of their fundraising and this year the numbers had grown as had the generosity of supporters, so they were happily busting at the seams for a lunch we all look forward to, not just to support but to hear of the research advances, and hear the chosen guest speaker, Matthew Johnstone.
It was in 2005 that Johnstone published his illustrated guide, Living with a Black Dog, about his long time battle with depression and today his extensive speaking work is about mindfulness, work life balance, mental health and well being with his insightful illustrations and wise words presented in a way we all understand. Scratch the surface of most people and their will be an incident, a connection or an episode we would now call a mental illness in their lives. That we talk more openly and with genuine compassion is a major advance in breaking down the barriers and erasing the stigma to get on with treatment as soon as possible. And while we are confronted daily with different needs in the area of mental illness, with many situations exacerbated by drugs and alcohol, the whole of government approach with services, health care, support and research is the only way to deal with it.
The 1 in 5 statistic is a formidable slice of the population, and it’s going to impact us all when we least expect it.